Progressives put establishment Democrats to shame as US pushes regime change in Venezuela

Ro Khanna, Right, AOC, left.
John McEvoy

On 23 January, US president Donald Trump officially backed an ongoing coup attempt in Venezuela. While the self-defined ‘Trump resistance’ has remained largely silent, some real resistance has emerged within US politics. And progressive Democrats are putting their party’s establishment politicians to shame.

The ‘Trump resistance’

On 5 September 2018, the New York Times published an anonymous op-ed written by an official within the Trump administration. It was entitled I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration. It spoke of Trump’s “amorality”, and claimed: “Americans should know that there are adults in the room”.

According to the New Yorker on 22 January 2019, meanwhile, “the resistance is winning”. The article argued: “At this stage, a publisher should perhaps commission a book from Trump… that puts a more positive spin on the Administration’s record”.

What’s better than writing a book to save a presidency? The answer became clearer the following day, when Trump officially backed a coup in Venezuela.

With few exceptions, the ‘Trump resistance’ has since gone silent. So have the ‘adults’ left the room? Or did they never exist in the first place?

Real resistance

Many awaited newly-elected Democratic representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s response to events in Venezuela. And while much of the mainstream US left has carefully avoided talking about Venezuela to prevent false comparisons to their own policies, Democratic representative Ro Khanna bravely spoke out. And Ocasio-Cortez retweeted his comment:

The few exceptions to cross-party silence (or, worse, support) for a coup in Venezuela show there are some voices calling for an anti-imperialist US foreign policy.

And Khanna led the way, stepping away from the false and simplistic ‘good vs bad’ position being pushed in political and media propaganda. In particular, he highlighted the utter hypocrisy of US policy on Saudi Arabia and Venezuela:

Unsurprisingly, the political and media establishment soon tried to attack and smear Khanna:

US Green Party leader Jill Stein, meanwhile, was another progressive voice calling for perspective:

In short, there is some real resistance in the US to Trump and imperialist interventionism. It’s just not coming from Republicans or establishment Democrats.

Featured images via US House of Representatives/Wikimedia and US House of Representatives

Get involved

  • Join the Venezuela Solidarity Campaign.
  • Message your MP to ask them to condemn Trump’s actions.
  • Support Witness for Peace in its campaigns for peace and social justice in Latin America. You can also travel on one its many delegations to the region.
  • Check out The Canary‘s Latin America coverage.

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